Coffee Table Book Printing

coffee-table-headerHave you ever relaxed on a friend’s couch and noticed an expansive ‘photo-heavy’ book sitting on a rustic coffee table?  That is what we call a coffee table book.  Today we are going to look at coffee table book printing and hopefully give you a better understanding of the wide arching term: coffee table book.  We will discuss: what is a coffee table book, what sizes are common, pages in a coffee table book as well as the making of a coffee table book here at PrintingCenterUSA.

What Is A Coffee Table Book?

PrintingCenterUSA considers most coffee table books to be a bit larger than usual printed as a perfect bound book.  The books are soft-cover and placed on top of coffee tables to be used as conversation starters represented most often by exceptionally curated photos.

What Size Is a Coffee Table Book?

When making a coffee table book, size matters.  You are going to want to display your images and stories in a large book format.  You want it to stand out and selecting one of the sizes below will certainly help draw the attention of your guests:

  • 8×8 – This square option makes for a fun book to flip through while displaying your images in a different size.
  • 8.5×11 – The portrait option allows you to better showcase vertical images.
  • 11×8.5 – Landscape options are a go-to if most of your coffee table book images are landscapes and have wider exposures.
  • 11×11- This larger book we offer will pop on any coffee table.


How Many Pages Should A Coffee Table Book Be?

The page count in your coffee table book is going to vary with how many photos are in your database that you want to share.  But, PrintingCenterUSA has some standard page counts to consider when it comes to your book.  The binding option recommended is perfect bound which means you will need a minimum of 28 pages.  From there we often see the most common page count lingering around 200 pages.  This page count also will allow you as a photographer or self-publisher to provide content on the spine, adding an extra touch of professionalism.


Making Your Coffee Table Book

Now that we have discussed the basics and have a better understanding of what a coffee table book is let’s dive into making and designing your coffee table book.  There is probably a theme to your photography and you’re going to want that to be represented in your coffee table book.  Many common themes that work well centered on a coffee table are associated with travel, fashion, art books, and fine photography.  People will also display their wedding or family photos in a high-quality coffee table.  Not only does it become a conversation starter with your guest but a great way to look back on memories with your close family!

Learn More: Book Layout: 9 Easy Steps

Once that theme is identified and you’ve selected the high-resolution photographs or illustrations that best display your story, it’s time to organize the book.  We find it best to show your story in certain formats.  A good starting point would be chronological, geographical, or color based.  Some of the best coffee table books follow a distinct color pattern that creates a very cool coffee table book.  Other creators tend to design the coffee table book in a way that represents the emotions in the photographs.


The beginning pages can outline the contents of the book with text and then the rest of the book should be focused on the eye-catching images.  Some artists and photographers like to add little captions for locations which makes it easier to harken back on the memories.  Once the design of the book is finished it’s best to consider the paper specs which we look at next.

Paper Stock

The paper stock selected at checkout will have an effect on the overall appearance of your coffee table book.  There are a few different options we recommend here at PrintingCenterUSA when it comes to coffee table books.  If you’re looking for a subtle approach to presenting your images then choosing 80# or 100# matte text is an excellent option for the inside pages.  Images for your book might appear a little more subdued or flat; great for black and white. When your images are full of bright colors, you’ll want to consider a gloss text for the inside pages.  This will reflect the light a little more and really make your image ‘pop.’  

gloss-vs-matteThe cover plays a most important role in creating an elegant coffee table book.  PrintingCenterUSA offers multiple options when it comes to your cover paper that will certainly make for quality books.  You will want to go with a 100# cover option which will allow for a nicely constructed book.  Adding UV coating on the cover (recommended by PrintingCenterUSA) will make for an extra glossy finish.   And if you’re really looking to impress your guests then choosing soft-touch lamination for your cover finish will take the coffee table book to the next level.  The soft-touch lamination will also allow you to sell your coffee table book for a little more if that’s what you’re looking to do!

Learn More: Choosing The Perfect Paper For Printing

Printing a coffee table book is a unique way to express your passions.  PrintingCenterUSA is here to help you create a masterpiece with premium paper and binding options.  We also offer an easy to use (and free) book design tool right on our website.  Our vibrant colors will help you create an iconic coffee table book that will last for years to come.

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